Russell Wilson

Best of NFL: Ezekiel Elliott's 3 TDs, 219 yards lead Cowboys past 49ers

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Best of NFL: Ezekiel Elliott's 3 TDs, 219 yards lead Cowboys past 49ers

SANTA CLARA, Calif. — Ezekiel Elliott gained 219 yards from scrimmage and tied a career high with three touchdowns just days after a legal reprieve put his suspension on hold and the Dallas Cowboys beat the winless San Francisco 49ers 40-10 on Sunday.

Elliott was granted his second temporary restraining order on Tuesday, putting his six-game suspension over domestic violence allegations on hold and then gave the Cowboys (3-3) a big boost on the field.

Elliott matched his season total of rushing touchdowns with two in the first quarter and then took a short pass from Dak Prescott 72 yards for another touchdown on Dallas' first possession of the second half to put the 49ers (0-7) away. Elliott ran for 147 yards on 26 carries to go with the big catch, setting a career high in scrimmage yards in a game.

That performance spoiled the starting debut of rookie quarterback C.J. Beathard, who was sacked five times, lost two fumbles and failed to lead the 49ers into the end zone until he scored on a run with the game out of hand in the fourth quarter (see full recap)

Super Mismatch: Patriots continue mastery of Falcons
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- Tom Brady threw two touchdown passes and the New England Patriots toyed with the Atlanta Falcons -- sound familiar? -- 23-7 in a fog-filled Super Bowl rematch Sunday night that wasn't particularly super.

New England scored the final 31 points to win the NFL championship in February. Placards and shirts reading 28-3 were ever-present in and around Gillette Stadium as the Patriots (5-2) scored the first 23 points in this prime-time mismatch. The Falcons (3-3), who led New England by that 25-point margin in the third quarter of the Super Bowl before folding, were outplayed throughout this one.

While Atlanta looked tentative, if not intimidated, Brady and his offense clinically tore apart the Falcons. Mixing runs and passes, New England controlled the clock and field position. And its defense, ranked at the bottom of the entire league through six weeks, stymied the NFL's fifth-ranked offense.

Brady threw a shovel pass to Brandin Cooks that traveled perhaps a foot, and the receiver used his speed to get into the left corner of the end zone. The other TD was a 2-yarder to James White, who had three touchdowns, including the winner, in the Super Bowl (see full recap).

Goff leads Rams to shutout as Cardinals' Palmer breaks arm
Already one of the more dynamic offenses in the NFL, the Los Angeles Rams found a new gear against the Arizona Cardinals.

Jared Goffran for a touchdown and threw for another and Greg Zuerlein made four field goals as the Rams won for the first time in three appearances in Britain, beating the Cardinals 33-0 at Twickenham Stadium on Sunday.

Goff completed 22 of 37 passes for 235 yards with an interception and Todd Gurley ran for 106 yards and a touchdown for the NFC West-leading Rams (5-2), who finished with 425 yards of offense - their most in a game in more than three years.

Los Angeles has also won five of its first seven games for the first time since 2003, which was the last time the Rams finished with a winning record.

"We haven't been in this position, but we're definitely grateful," Gurley said. "We've just got to take it game by game."

Arizona (3-4), meanwhile, heads home with significant questions after quarterback Carson Palmer broke his left arm in the second quarter (see full recap).

Saints recover late to topple Packers 
GREEN BAY, Wis. — The way that the New Orleans Saints won on the road on Sunday might serve as a valuable lesson in their quest to return to the playoffs.

The defense gave up a long touchdown run on the first series to the Green Bay Packers. Drew Brees had two interceptions — and the Saints weren't even out of the first quarter yet at Lambeau Field.

But Brees bounced back to throw for a touchdown and run for another, Mark Ingram rushed for a score and the Saints recovered for a 26-17 win.

Green Bay lost its first game with Brett Hundley starting at quarterback for the injured Aaron Rodgers (see full recap).

Wilson throws 2 second-half TDs, Seahawks D dominates Giants
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — Russell Wilson threw three second-half touchdown passes and the Seattle Seahawk limited the New York Giants' receiver-depleted offense to 177 yards in a 24-7 win on Sunday.

Wilson hit Doug Baldwin with a go-ahead 22-yard touchdown pass midway through the third quarter. He put the game away with a 38-yard TD throw to Paul Richardson on a play that had to be reviewed because of simultaneous possession and he closed out the scoring with a 1-yard toss to Jimmy Graham with 2:14 to go.

The Seahawks (4-2) limited the Giants (1-6) to 46 yards rushing, 14 first downs and just 24:34 in time of possession. The defense only forced one turnover, but the fumble by Eli Manning led to the Richardson touchdown.

The Giants, who stunned Denver on Sunday night for their first win, were only in this game because their defense made plays and limited the Seattle to a field goal in the first half despite being on the field for more than 20 minutes (see full recap)

Eagles' defense embracing challenge of facing yet another superstar quarterback

Eagles' defense embracing challenge of facing yet another superstar quarterback

The two quarterbacks with the highest passer ratings in NFL history are Russell Wilson and Aaron Rodgers. They also happen to be the last quarterback and the next quarterback the Eagles face.
 
Which is just how this year has gone.
 
The Eagles have faced 10 quarterbacks this year, and seven of the 10 have either won a Super Bowl or are ranked among the top 15 quarterbacks in NFL history. And one of three others is Matt Stafford, who ranks second in NFL history in passing yards per game.
 
It’s a minefield of superstar quarterbacks, and so far the Eagles have held their own.
 
Despite facing all-pro QB after all-pro QB, the Eagles’ defense ranks No. 9 in the NFL in passing yards allowed, No. 6 in opposing passer rating and No. 2 in completion percentage going into their showdown Monday night with Rodgers and the Packers.
 
“Every Sunday you’re out there you have to give it your best, you have to perform at your highest level,” safety Rodney McLeod said. “There’s no Sunday that’s guaranteed to any team in this league. That’s what I’ve learned in my five years in this league. 
 
“We’ve been challenged every week. I think we’ve faced it all this year. We’ve had our highs and our lows, and Monday is another big challenge for us, Aaron Rodgers is a Hall of Famer, can make every single throw. It’s going to be a test for us as an entire defense but definitely us in the back end. 
 
“But I think the type of guys we have, we embrace those moments, and we look forward to going up against those type of guys and measuring ourselves against the best guys out there.”
 
There are three quarterbacks in NFL history who have thrown at least 200 passes and have a passer rating over 100: Rodgers, Wilson and Dak Prescott. That’s four of the 16 quarterbacks the Eagles face this year.
 
Eli Manning and Ben Roethlisberger have won two Super Bowls each and Wilson and Rodgers have won one. Prescott, Wilson, Rodgers, Kirk Cousins and Matt Ryan are all ranked in the all-time NFL top-10 in passer rating (200 attempts or more), and Robert Griffin III — who the Eagles faced on opening day — is 15th.
 
The least accompished quarterback the Eagles have faced this year is Sam Bradford, who they traded away in August. Everyone else is either ranked among the best in NFL history or has won a Super Bowl. 

Or both.
 
“Add to that, every quarterback is different,” linebacker Jordan Hicks said. “So you have Russell last week, who is able to be so crafty. We have Matt Ryan (two weeks ago) who is sitting there making every pass. And now you have Aaron Rodgers who provides a little bit of both. 
 
“But this defense, we embrace it. Absolutely. It’s a new challenge every week and that’s the way it should be. We don’t want any handouts. We want to prove that we’re going up against the top competition every week and doing what we should be against them. 
 
“We’re excited for Monday night. We’re playing one of the top quarterbacks the league has had for however long, so we’re really excited for the challenge.”
 
After Monday, the Eagles face Andy Dalton, who has the 17th-highest passer rating in history; Cousins again; Joe Flacco, who won a Super Bowl; Manning again; then perhaps Prescott, depending on whether the Cowboys have locked up the No. 1 seed in the NFC.
 
What makes the Eagles’ pass defense performance so impressive is how bad they were the last few years. The Eagles allowed the second-most passing yards in NFL history over a three-year span from 2013 through 2015 and the most passing touchdowns.
 
They allowed 20 quarterbacks to throw for 300 yards under Chip Kelly and Bill Davis. And none this year.
 
This is the first time since 2003 the Eagles haven’t allowed a 300-yard passer through the first 10 games of a season.
 
“We enjoy it,” safety Malcolm Jenkins said. “We get a top receiver as well it seems like every week. We enjoy the challenge. Aaron Rodgers has been in the conversation of elite quarterbacks for as long as I’ve been in the league and nothing’s changed. You turn on the tape and he’s still playing at a high level. He’s one of those guys who can do it all. 
 
“You talk about Drew Brees, (Tom) Brady, what they do from the line of scrimmage, what they do from the pocket, and he’s just as talented as those guys from the pocket. You talk about Russell Wilson and his ability to extend plays and get those big chunks, he does the same exact thing and he’s probably more accurate on the run. It’s a big task but we’re looking forward to it. It’ll be a fun matchup for us.”
 
At home, the Eagles’ pass defense has been remarkable.
 
In four games at the Linc, all wins, the Eagles have yet to let a quarterback complete 60 percent of his passes. They’ve allowed just two passing TDs at home this year and held opposing QBs to a 67.4 passer rating.
 
The numbers are eye-opening. So are Rodgers’ numbers.
 
It all makes for an intriguging matchup Monday night in South Philly.
 
“We don’t get any breaks,” McLeod said. “Then you look at the receivers we face. A top guy every week.
 
“But we like it. As a secondary you just embrace those challenges. It  brings out the best in you when you go against guys of that caliber. It brings out the best in everybody because you know you have to give your best on every single play and be on point because that one point where you’re not could be the difference in the game.”

Instant Replay: Seahawks 26, Eagles 15

Instant Replay: Seahawks 26, Eagles 15

BOX SCORE

SEATTLE – It would have been hard enough for the Eagles to win on Sunday even if they played the perfect game in Seattle.

It was impossible to win with the way they played.

Brandon Graham jumped offsides, Jalen Mills missed a tackle and Nelson Agholor didn’t line up on the line of scrimmage. The list of mistakes goes on.

All of that was too much to overcome against one of the best teams in the NFL, as the Eagles lost, 26-15, to the Seahawks at CenturyLink Field on Sunday afternoon.

With the loss, the Eagles dropped to .500 on the season at 5-5. The Seahawks improved to 7-2-1. The Seahawks improved to 32-5 at home since 2012.

The Eagles are now 0-5 when they give up 20-plus points this season and 5-0 when they don’t.

Despite all the Eagles’ mistakes in the first half, they were down just 16-7 heading into the second half. But the Eagles lost their top two running backs and the Seahawks cruised to a victory.

The Seahawks ended up outgaining the Eagles 439-308 on the afternoon. The Eagles added a fourth-quarter touchdown, but couldn’t get any closer.

Turning point
The Eagles scored a 57-yard touchdown that would have given them the lead in the second quarter, but Agholor wasn’t lined up on the line of scrimmage. The Eagles were called for an illegal formation and the play was called back.

On the very next series, the Eagles – as they like to do – went back to Agholor. He was all alone in the middle of the field for what should have been a first down, but he dropped the ball.

Key stat
With his touchdown catch on a trick play in the third quarter, Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson has the same number of receiving touchdowns as Agholor this season. Agholor hasn’t had one since Week 1.

First half
The Eagles had chances in the first half but went into the locker room down 16-7 after a few costly mistakes.

The biggest was the illegal formation that negated a 57-yard touchdown that would have given the Eagles a 14-13 lead. On the ensuing drive, the Seahawks picked up a field goal.

On the drive before the Agholor penalty, the Seahawks went on a 10-play, 92-yard drive that was capped by a 35-yard touchdown catch by Jimmy Graham. Graham caught the ball with Jaylen Watkins draped on him, but it didn't matter. The play before the touchdown, Brandon Graham was flagged for being offside. Even earlier in the drive, the Seahawks had a 2nd-and-20 from their own 10-yard line and converted on third down.

The Seahawks kicked off the scoring with a big 72-yard run from rookie C.J. Prosise, but after the Seahawks missed the extra point, the Eagles responded with a 13-play, 68-yard drive that spanned 7:35. It was their longest drive (plays and time) of the season. Ertz caught his first touchdown pass of the season to cap off the drive.

The Seahawks outgained the Eagles, 300-146, in the first half.

Offensive stud
Ertz picked up his first touchdown of the season and should have had another had it not been for a bonehead penalty.

Offensive dud
Agholor. The penalty, the drop. Just an awful day for the former first-round pick.

Defensive stud
Nolan Carroll had a huge highlight-reel hit in the first half.

Defensive dud
Rookie Jalen Mills didn’t have his best game. He had a rough day in coverage and missed a tackle on the long touchdown run by Prosise.

Injury report
Ryan Mathews (knee) and Darren Sproles (ribs) were both injured in the first half and did not return for the second half. Jason Peters (left forearm) left briefly but returned. Halapoulivaati Vaitai left in the fourth quarter with a left knee injury.

Jordan Matthews (back) and Zach Ertz (hamstring) were both questionable coming into the game, but were active. Safety Terrence Brooks (hamstring) did not play.

Up next
The Eagles will be home next weekend for a Monday Night Football game against the Packers. Then they’ll travel to Cincinnati the following weekend.